Anvil or Hammer

Up Slope

Posted in Rest and Recovery by Mike on June 15, 2008

I went to the MAC, a bit of recumbent bike on the cardio program, felt really good. I was itching to lift weights so I did some pull ups and medicine ball on a wobble board. I did 5 of each of the three grips on the pull ups. Those kinda proved my point to myself about over exciting my nerves too much causing pain in my sciatica. In my vim and vigor to do something hard I over exerted myself a bit and ended up sore and uncomfortable by the end of my pull ups. I did my wobble board stuff, some stretching then a little light cardio. The good news is that cardio always provides a bit of relief. The other good news is that the discomfort didn’t carry on beyond the gym.

Dumbarton, for as warm and humid as it was, was really busy. I kept to my program from the week before. 30 minutes of walking on the treadmill then some stretching. After that I got on their cheap elliptical. After the elliptical I did 5 sets of 12 on the bench with 125 and 5 sets of 12 with 90 on the chest supported row. I tried to alter my grip as much as I could on each one. I did a bit more light cardio then I went and did rope tricep pushdowns and cable curls using 40 and 20 lbs respectively. Finally, I brought in a blockweight that was half of a 70 so call is 30ish pounds. I got that out and did some cleans and a lot of just picking it up and playing with it. I encouraged other guys there to do it. Many of them missed the first try but I think they all got it before I went home. Next week I’ll bring in my half of an 80.

I continue with biweekly PT. At this point they basically have me warm up on a bike and then do whatever exercises I can until the actual therapist is ready. Once she is ready, she does her “Hands on” which seems to be their term for any combination of massage and evaluation. Once that is over, into traction I go. As they strap me in they typically say something to the effect of, when you’re done someone will unhook you, just do whatever stretches you haven’t done today and we’ll see you next time.
The traction takes some getting used to, after you settle into it though, the rhythmic nature is almost relaxing. As long as it’s helping my disc draw back, I’m all for it. It does seem to excite the nervous system a bit, which makes sense. I’ve found z-health to be a nice way to mitigate that.

As i just mentioned it’s really good for calming an angry sciatic nerve as I need to. If I reach a point that could be described as pain, even just uncomfortable, it’s not terribly effective. If I catch it when the nerve is first getting irritated, it seems to help a lot. I’m booking a second session with Mike this week.

Other Disc stuff
I’ve dropped my ibuprofen dosing from 2 tablets four times a day to 2 tablets three times a day. On Friday I took one additional supplementary tablet to get by, it helped. I hope to not need any more supplementary tablets this week. It’s still gonna be a bit before I’m done but I’m working on it.

I give myself a 5 out of 10 this week on eating. I didn’t calculate my calories or anything, just tried to eat clean. Monday was so-so, I didn’t take enough food so I grabbed a sushi roll to supplement. Tuesday I did poorly, I grabbed a burger for lunch. Wednesday through today have been pretty good as far as planned meals. The big weakness in my diet has been that in my slackerly time I allowed myself to go back to the old habit of grazing the garbage my coworkers keep handy. I need to break myself of that habit. I also ran out of decaf coffee at work, unwilling to drink caffinated coffee I have been drinking hot chocolate.
This week, I’ll work on the grazing habit, I’m planning on taking pretty much the same food, two largish romain salads and two protein dishes, last week it was turkey burgers, this week I will probably make chicken strips.
On Tuesday of Wednesday I was surprised when I stepped on the scale and saw 232.4. I don’t think i tacked on a bunch of water weight. I think I underestimated the fat gain in my last post, I said 2-3 lbs of fat and water each from the last good weigh in. I’m gonna bump that to 4-5 and 2-3 lbs of fat and water respectively. I don’t exactly know how fast muscle atrophies but I wouldn’t think I lost a full 10 lbs of muscle over the course of 6 weeks.